Stance softens on anchored putter


The PGA Tour members have spoken and now the anchored putting stroke is in the hands of the US Golf Association and Royal Ancient.

The game’s guardians wanted feedback before making official their proposed ban of the anchored stroke, and they got it from tour players who, by all accounts, voiced a collective opposition to it.

Steve Stricker, who was on the teleconference on Monday that featured Commissioner Tim Finchem and the tour’s policy board, said on Tuesday: “I know that they’re drafting up a letter to send to the USGA and RA to kind of voice our position as a tour. But after that we still don’t know where it’s going to lead us, and it’s going to be interesting.”

If they go through with the ban, the tour could choose not to abide by it, which would create the potentially awkward situation of players who use anchored strokes having to switch to conventional putters for the US Open and the British Open.

“I can see the tour adopting the rule saying that it’s okay for players to use a long putter,” Stricker said.

Brendan Steele, who uses an anchored stroke, said of the proposed ban, “Everybody was pretty much against it, so we’ll see what happens.”

Even traditionalists like Tiger Woods, who said last year that he had never been a fan of the anchored stroke because he believes the pendulum motion is a fundamental part of the stroke, appears to have softened. “Well, I understand if we go either way,” Woods said this week.

Stricker said he was for the ban in the beginning but that his stance definitely has softened. “I guess the more information that we’ve received, I think it’s swayed a lot of the players’ opinions.”

New York Times Service

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